To watch a star-studded screening at Liberty Cinema, Mumbai, isn’t less than a colossal experience. After all, this grand theatre has celebrated different shades of the film industry since Independence. This theatre has witnessed the success of many Indian classics and it once again came to life when Anurag Kashyap’s film ‘Mukkabaaz’ was screened here for the Mumbai Academy of Motion Images.
One can just imagine the huge crowd that came to watch his most-waited film. As soon the name ‘Mukkabaaz’ appeared on the silver screen, viewers couldn’t contain their happiness.
‘Mukkabaaz’, unlike his previous films, unfolds a new chapter about love in the time of hate. This new rendition brings together a cocktail mixed with the right amount of punches that keeps you hooked to the story.
Shravan Singh (Vineet Kumar Singh) is an aspiring boxer from Bareilly and can do anything to be a national player. He meets Sunaina (Zoya Hussain), his boss Bhagwan Das Mishra’s (Jimmy Shergil) niece and instantly falls in love with her. A beautiful love story brews between Shravan and Sunaina who is mute and uses technology to express her thoughts. Their beautiful tale is simple and touching.
But what happens when you offend and hurt the ego one of the most powerful men in Uttar Pradesh? Your dreams are crushed, you struggle every single day and you don’t get to choose who you love and you brace yourself for a never-ending fight. ‘Mukkabaaz’ (The Brawler) is about love, hate, passion, sports and everything above and beyond it.
The menacing character of Bhagwan Das Mishra is someone who can crush you to pulp. You don’t mess with a man like him because when you do, he makes it his life’s sole motto to ruin you and everyone around you. Hurt by Shravan and Sunaina, he vows to destroy them. You also have Ravi Kishan who becomes Shravan’s coach and advices him that in order for the world to hear him out, he needs to win and make people value what he says.
Kashyap introduces you to UP in a very different manner, unlike the one you witnessed in ‘Bareilly Ki Barfi’. His vision of UP is cruel, vexed, enraged, corrupt, diluting yet true and real that you can’t get over it when you leave the theatres.
From casteism to the bureaucracy of Indian sports to not having the freedom to aspire and love, Kashyap brilliantly points out vital societal issues that sub-consciously make a huge impact in our lives.
As Kishan says in the teaser of the film, “Uttar Pradesh ke Mike Tysen hai jinhe pehla mukka chalane se pehle ek Brahmin ki kanya se mohabbat ho gayi.”
In a country where we often talk about sports, ‘Mukkabaaz’ presents a true picture of how talented people struggle to achieve what they aspire and how power corrupts everything. The music of the film is yet another highlight that totally sweeps you away. Look out for the soundtrack ‘Paintra’ which will give you goosebumps with its beats.
Every actor fits so well to their role that you wouldn’t even think for a moment that they are just playing a character. The film takes pretty good time to establish its plot but it’s engrossing all the way.
P.S. The film didn’t follow Kashyap’s usual sex and violence formula yet stands out to be a film that every millennial must watch.
The film is set to hit the theatres near you on 10 November.